Top-flight squash for North Norfolk

SQUASH: North Norfolk sealed promotion to the Premier Elite of Norfolk squash despite losing the final top-of-the-table clash 3-2 to title winners Barnham Broom II.

However, captain Tim Perry was ecstatic: 'If we had been offered second place back in September, we would have taken it with open arms.'

The final battle saw Kevin Blake at No 4 clinch the club trophy with 86 per cent wins in the season (12 wins, two losses) with an emphatic total 3-0 victory over Adie Martin.

Dev Mahatme at No 5 came second best to rapidly-improving youngster Jo Bolt, who levelled the match score at 1-1. However, his record of 11 wins with only four losses meant he was vital to the team.

Tim Perry (nine wins, seven losses) at No 2 bought North back into contention with a resounding 3-0 over Ben Rawsthorne. The coaching by Richard Millman showed as he retrieved virtually everything and made far fewer mistakes.

European O60 champion and England captain Martin Pearse at No 3 lost a tight battle to Luke Plumridge 3-1 to equal. Pearse won most matches, 13, but lost three, to come second with 81 per cent.

However, since February 14, he has been playing with a heavily-strapped injury with considerable loss of movement.

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No 1 Martin Guppy, found Adam Goodson on top form. But seven wins out of 16 in the top company was very commendable, considering the amount of long-haul flying he has to do every month in his job.

Perry said: 'Considering, on paper, many teams were stronger than us, it shows how many match winners we possess and the team spirit to keep virtually the same side together all season, with only three individual matches missed.

'But whether we want to go up is another matter — although there is talk about a Norfolk Super League. Therefore, we would be in Division One, which would probably suit us better.'